The Asylum House has a new home, no longer at the famed German Church Park on Indy’s Southside. They’ve graduated to a rural location on the outskirts of Greenwood where they have more room to grow, both in size and creativity.
The haunt begins in a dark and dreary graveyard populated with life-size headstones and a looming mausoleum. Patrons are instructed to huddle in a circle, rather than walking in a line, as they shuffle through the burial grounds to meet and interact with a grave-digger, childish ghost, and the most terrifying character you may ever meet at a haunt- no exaggerating; whatever was chained to the wall in The Asylum House’s yard is extremely disturbing. Elaborate costumes, fanciful accents, and undetectable hiding spots were the defining qualities of The Asylum House’s graveyard thriller and set the bar for the remaining hour of entertainment very high.
Unfortunately, the beginning was also the climax and failed to achieve the same level of terror throughout the rest of the haunt. The Asylum House does define their attractions as interactive, meaning the monsters will touch you, but they rarely do. They ask questions of their intruders, but lack creative responses when patrons actually answer them.
What the inside lacks in originality, the outside makes up for it in creativity. We were corralled to the woods for a jaunt down an un-lit path through the trees for long interludes of inactivity. Our otherwise peaceful walk was sporadically interrupted by hidden characters just when least expected. They always jumped out to threaten us, but never followed through on their implications. Scene after scene was built with much detail and provoked curiosity, but repeatedly failed to offer any real shock factor.
Indy Mojo veteran Tricia Kincaid enjoyed the interactive nature of Asylum House and liked literally being a part of the experience. She explains, “One of my favorite parts was at the very beginning, but I’m not going to give it away. Let me just say that when it’s completely dark and you can faintly hear and FEEL …something… the fear factor is definitely taken to the next level.”
The actors played their parts very well and created quite a creepy atmosphere right from the beginning. The props and beginning of the walk through the asylum were quite entertaining and very dark. There were a few portions of interaction with the actors inside the asylum and throughout the walk, which made it more enjoyable than people just jumping out and scaring us. Some parts inside were almost too disorienting and dark to continue on without help from the workers inside The Asylum House. The woods had some really neat scenes and actors, but at the same time there were lengthy periods of nothing happening. Finally, the corn field at the end was very dull and had us just walk through it without any scares.
I know that The Asylum has lofty goals in place for years to come and are excited to grow with their new location, so I fully believe they’ll have something different to offer us time and time again for years to come. Chalk it up to growing pains and know that if you’ve been to this haunt in years past you’ll be getting into something entirely different if you check it out during the 2012 season.
2198 SR 37 South (1.5 miles south of Smith Valley Rd.)
Greenwood, Indiana 46143